AGNPH Stories

Luca - 1st Edition by Felix


Story Notes:

This is the first posted edition of my story Luca.
Luca is a special riolu who is given to the trainer Felix. Meant for each other, the two endeavor to make the best of their lives together. However, what is life without trials to make bonds grow stronger?

Life continues, for better or worse.

When Ashley and Kail came back in both Luca and I looked over to Kail to see how he had taken the news. Much too both our relief’s he was happily standing beside Ashley where they had stopped in the entrance to the living room. Luca smiled warmly at him and asked, “You alright now?” in the same warm tone as her look. Kail sighed in relief and smiled back as he gave his answer. Though I couldn’t actually understand it I knew what he had said.

Just as Kail got distracted by Luca, Latias rushed over in her human form. She wrapped her arms around Kail’s neck and kissed him on the cheek resting her head on his shoulder when she had finished. Kail was surprised yet again by the action, but this time he didn’t flinch, he only blushed, and before he could bring himself to react, Latias released him and smiled cutely once again at him before returning to play with Leo.

Luca and I snickered to ourselves at the spectacle. It seemed that Latias liked Kail, and from his reactions we could tell his experience with women was… limited. I could only imagine what he would do when Ashley tried to get him ready for a contest…

The eight of us casually sat around the living room, Umbreon and Lady snuggled up, resting together, Leo and Latias playing, and Luca, Kail, Ashley, and myself talking about different things that happened on our travels. Until our parents got up things continued, and once they were fully awake they joined in our conversations, wanting to know what their kids had been up to.

After another week of staying home relaxing I felt like it was time to leave. Mom had gotten over my injuries and so had my dad, despite his act to conceal his concern. Tarzan was happy to see us as well, and seemed to wonder what happened at first, but he soon forgot the whole thing. Ashley was getting ready to head to her third contest for the season, and it seemed like my companions were getting tired of sleeping all day. That is all but one… Lady didn’t seem to mind even after a week, which I actually found somewhat odd. Other than her sleeping habits she was acting normal so I wasn’t extremely worried, and simply made a mental note to mention it to Nurse Joy the next time I got Lady a check up.

Once we were ready to leave we spent one last night at home, got up early the next morning and left. My sister did the same and had me wake her up in the morning so we could leave together. We walked down the path for a good distance before saying our goodbyes and going our separate ways. Latias was walking next to Ashley in her human guise and gave me and all of my partners a kiss before we left. I gave Kail one last hug and wished him the best with my sister.

“Thanks Felix… for everything.” Was his reply and he took a place next to Ashley with a smile. I gave my sister a hug as well and again wished her the best, while Luca hugged Kail and made sure he knew she forgave him. Whiskers and Tarzan remained in their balls, and both Ashley and I agreed to tell them the others said goodbye. Lady and Umbreon also said their goodbyes and did something very unexpected for Kail.

The two of them walked up and sat in front of Kail. He bent down to give each of them a pet and apologize one more time, but Lady didn’t give him the chance. She gave him a sincere lick on the cheek, and Umbreon yipped happily when Kail stopped petting him. I was stunned that Lady would do such a thing. I never imagined, and for that much neither did Kail, that she would actually forgive him completely, but it seemed as though she did.

Once everyone was done we continued on. Kail waved one last time before we were out of site and I could swear I saw a tear in his eye even though he had a smile on his face.

My companions and I continued traveling for another week before anything happened. We hadn’t found a gym in a long time so I decided to look one up for a change. I took the time to get Tarzan and Leo some more battle experience, and Tarzan actually managed to evolve into a Luxio.
Leo was fascinated by Tarzan’s evolution, which by some strange coincidence happened in a practice match between the two. Leo watched with wide eyes as Tarzan glowed and shifted forms. After that Leo wanted to know when he would evolve and started wanting me to train him harder so it would happen sooner. I didn’t know how to break it to him and Luca seemed just as sad as I did when he asked us. That day after Tarzan evolved we set up camp a little early and I sat Leo down so I could talk with him.

I had to tell him that Riolu evolved in a different way. He didn’t understand at first, though he picked up on how sad I was and figured it must be some kind of bad news. I explained how Luca had evolved for me, though it was a very simplified version Luca nuzzled my shoulder at the memory, and how Riolu normally evolve through a deep friendship with a trainer. A bit confused and depressed Leo asked sadly, “What about Kail? He said he was caught as a Lucario.”

I didn’t have an answer but it got me thinking that there might be some other way for Leo to evolve, so I kindly replied, “I’m… not sure how he evolved. I’ll make sure to ask him next time we see them. Okay?”

This got Leo’s spirits up a little bit and I rubbed his head before we got up and started getting ready for the night. However, something struck me as strange when I took a good look at my son. He was taller…

A full grown Riolu was around 2’4” tall, but judging from my own height Leo was now just under 3’, about half my height. It seemed extremely odd to me that he would get that tall and that I hadn’t notice until now, but I decided not to worry about it at the moment and continued making camp.

That night after everyone else had fallen asleep Luca wanted to talk with me. Umbreon and Lady had curled up as usual, but Leo had leaned up against a nearby tree and fallen asleep while still trying to think. It was pretty hard for me to see him like he was, disappointed, confused and determined to figure things out but having no where to start. Since Tarzan had evolved I figured he could stay out of his ball with us now, and when he saw Leo alone thinking next to the tree he went over and lay down with him.

I had just about gotten my eyes shut when I felt a paw on my shoulder and heard Luca saying, “Felix… can we talk about something?” in a sad and somewhat hesitant voice.
My heart instantly sank. I hated seeing her like this, especially when I didn’t know what to do to make her feel better. I quickly woke myself up and rolled over to face her. She was sitting upright looking at her paws which she now had folded in her lap. “Sure.” I said kindly as I too sat up and made my way over behind her. Once I was there I hugged her and picked her up slightly so I could set her in my own lap. She giggled lightly when I did this which made me smile as well, but she didn’t let herself get distracted.

“Honey… Do you think Leo will ever evolve?” She continued in her sad voice as I held her and cuddled her shoulder. Seeing how upset she was about this I hugged her tighter as I responded in my same kind voice as we both watched Leo sleep. “I’m not sure… But look at him, doesn’t he seem taller? I think my being his father might have changed his evolution cycle.” As I said this Luca looked over Leo and as I finished her eyes went wide.

“What do you mean? You think… he’ll just grow into a Lucario?” She said, this time with a more cheerful tone, but remained quiet so as not to wake anyone.

“That’s what I’m hoping, but I didn’t want to say anything incase I was wrong. I wanted to ask Nurse Joy if it was at all possible before I told him... and you.” I responded in the same caring tone I started in.

“But you’re probably right! I never thought about that. Oh thank you. You don’t know how much better that makes things.” Luca said happily as she rubbed her head on mine. We stayed in this position for a few minutes watching our son sleep. Leo had long since dozed off and in doing so slipped off of the tree he was leaning on. If he had hit the ground he might have woken up, but instead he ended up with his head resting on Tarzan’s body.

Tarzan raised his head to see what had just landed on him, but seeing that Leo was the cause he laid his head back down and fell back to sleep, content to be a pillow for the night.

After a while I looked down at Luca and realized she had just about fallen asleep herself. I smiled warmly and slowly lay back taking her gently with me. I rolled to the side and carefully released her beside me. I watched her face to see that I didn’t disturb her but when I released her she grimaced and whined very quietly. I had intended to sleep next to her but still give her space but when I saw her reaction I got comfortable and let my arm come to rest over her side as I moved closer to her. Once I did this she relaxed so I happily fell asleep while holding her close.

The next morning Luca and I woke up to see Umbreon bringing Lady some berries to eat. We smiled to each other as we sat up and watched, but were interrupted when Leo suddenly jumped on his mother’s back. I flinched and took my arm off Luca while she fell forward slightly before regaining her balance and wits. She quickly twisted and grabbed Leo bringing him in front of her. As she did this she maneuvered her paws so she was holding Leo by a foot. Once she had a hold of him she held him in front of her dangling him as he looked up at her with a laugh. I was still surprised, but once the squabble was over I laughed and told Leo, “That’ll teach you to attack your mother!” Luca giggled and carefully released Leo on his back where he rolled over and stood before us with a contented smile.

Tarzan was still lounging as always by the tree he and Leo had fallen asleep by, waiting till the time came to leave before he put any effort forth. Lady gave Umbreon a sweet lick as he brought her a bite to eat and watched Luca when the incident began. Now that it was over she nosed a berry towards Umbreon and ate the other for herself.
Luca and I both stood up and got ready to leave. When we were done Lady Umbreon and Tarzan joined us while Leo stood beside his mother, and we set out to finish our walk to the nearest town and pokemon center.

When we reached the center I had intended to only get Lady a check up. I knew the others were fine and saw no reason to be so paranoid. However, Luca asked if she could see Nurse Joy. I was surprised, but agreed if that was what she wanted. She gave me a kiss and walked into the back room with Nurse Joy while I went to be with the rest of my companions, sitting on the bench that Tarzan had curled up on, with Leo sitting next to him. Lady came up and sat on the floor next to me with Umbreon beside her. I found it sweet that he wouldn’t leave her side but wondered why and what had happened to make him so openly affectionate and caring towards Lady, though I knew it was really none of my business and I didn’t mind at all.

Luca soon emerged with her normal cheerful demeanor. I almost didn’t notice as she dropped a small package covertly into my backpack then turned to Lady to tell her it was her turn. Lady turned to see Nurse Joy waiting for her and started over, but glanced hesitantly at Umbreon for some strange reason.

I’m not sure why but we all watched Lady enter the back room, and soon after she was out of site Umbreon pawed at Luca’s leg to get her attention. She bent down to let him speak to her and before I could ask what he was saying Luca grabbed him wrapping him in a hug, saying something about how happy she was for the TWO of them… But Umbreon didn’t seem nearly as enthusiastic about the news he had.

Luca quickly turned to Leo to ask if he could watch our bag for a little bit. Leo was pretty disappointed, he hated being left out of conversations and really wanted to know what we didn’t want him to hear, but he agreed and tried to hide his curiosity and disappointment.

“So what’s wrong?” I began after we had moved a short distance away from Leo, talking to Umbreon since I knew he was the one who wanted to talk with me, but Luca cheerfully chimed in. “Oh nothing’s wrong Umbreon just… Oh… sorry.” Luca was about to tell me something when she looked at Umbreon who was giving her a scared stare.

“Please Luca I have to tell him… I promised Lady…” he said in pokemon speak, but Luca didn’t translate for me so I figured the comment was aimed at her. “Alright.” Luca said in a much calmer voice and turned to me to act as a translator as Umbreon hesitantly began.

“Felix… I… There’s something I need to tell you… Lady and I… well she… I mean I…” Luca translated every word complete with pauses which I found rather cute, but from what Umbreon was saying I had a pretty good idea what he wanted to tell me.

I smiled kindly and interrupted him seeing as if he continued we’d probably be there till midnight. “So you two decided to become mates then?” I said in a tone to match my smile, but with an added sternness as well.

“Yes!” Umbreon blurted out reflexively then looked up at me with wide scared eyes, unable to believe what he had just admitted to me. I reached my hand out towards him and to my surprise, he cowered from it. He closed his eyes and bowed his head whimpering a little as he shivered. It didn’t take me long to figure out what he thought I was going to do, but I continued with my original intention.

I gently laid my hand on his head and rubbed his fur, gently massaging behind his large ears with my fingers and rubbing his left temple with my thumb.

“Thank you.” I said quietly which caused him to snap his deep red eyes open and look at me with a sad questioning look. “You… You’re not mad…?” Umbreon stuttered seeming rather surprised. “Mad?! No! Umbreon, you gave Lady something I never could, the love of an actual mate, why would I be mad about that?” I said sincerely and kindly, but after his initial relieved response he continued timidly. “Felix there’s… something else… I feel I should be the one to tell you…”

I already had a pretty good idea what he was going to say… and it explained why Lady had been acting fairly strange as of late.

“…Lady’s carrying… my pups…” He continued, in the same “reluctant to admit it” voice he had used before.

I didn’t know quite how to react even though I had figured it out half way through our conversation. Lady was my oldest and dearest friend, and the thought of Umbreon knocking her up was so alien to me that it was preventing me from responding. I was happy for them, I truly was, but something instinctual made me want to protect her. I knew Umbreon would never do anything to hurt Lady or her pups, and I knew he would take care of her, but it was that feeling of wanting the best for a close female friend that was doing this to me.

After a pause I looked over to Luca. She gave me a questioning look wondering if she had done something wrong. “Honey, I’m sorry but I need to speak with Umbreon alone.” I said solemnly and out of the corner of my eye I saw Umbreon shiver like a cold chill had just run down his spine. “Alright.” Luca responded with an understanding smile and started to get up to walk over to Leo.

Lady had been like a mother to Luca, but she knew how much Lady meant to me. I was willing to bet Luca felt like she came second but that wasn’t the case and I would have to show her that later tonight.

Lady and Luca both meant the world too me, I couldn’t compare them because they meant so much in different ways. Lady had always been there for me as a sincere friend. We had spent years together alone before Luca joined us. Luca on the other hand, I loved with all my heart, and I had no way of putting that into words.

As Luca started to stand up Umbreon frantically began speaking to her. “Luca no! Please translate this first!” Luca quickly sat back down and stroked Umbreon with her paw to calm him down. I wasn’t sure what was wrong, but obviously Umbreon wanted to say something so I let Luca stay to translate this last part for me.

Umbreon had a few tears in his eyes as he pleaded Luca to stay with him. Luca knew why since she had discovered them the morning after they made their decision but let Umbreon speak for himself. “Felix please! I’m sorry for what I did! I don’t know what came over me! Please don’t make me leave! I’m begging you!!!” Umbreon said frantically and almost too fast for Luca to translate smoothly. He had tears in his eyes and his rings were glowing bright from the passion in his plea. Luca had removed her paw to let him speak and now that he had finished I smiled kindly once again at him, his plea somehow comforted me even though his impression of the situation was completely wrong. I turned my head to Luca and gave her a nod. She smiled again knowing things were alright and joined Leo, though this still didn’t comfort Umbreon as he watched with a scared expression.

Once we were alone I looked back to Umbreon and began my own plea. “Umbreon I’m not making you leave… far from it in fact. I’m not upset, I just don’t know what I’m feeling. Lady means a lot to me, and I’m sure she means as much to you as Luca does to me, but because she’s my oldest friend it’s hard for me to just accept that you two are mates right away, no matter how much I would like to. Umbreon, I know I can trust you and in my mind I know you’ll take care of Lady but I need something more from you… Please promise me, that you’ll always be there for her and that you’ll take good care of her, and your pups…”

Umbreon looked at me for a short time with wavering eyes, he knew I couldn’t understand him but he knew no translator could convey something like this for him. ‘Breon’ was his response, before he pawed over to me and nuzzled my chest in my kneeling position, letting a few of his tears soak into my shirt.

“Good.” I said as I wrapped my arms around him rubbing his fur so he knew I really wasn’t going to abandon him. After a few seconds I released Umbreon and got up so we could join the others and wait for Lady, and Nurse Joy’s official announcement of what we now already knew.

When we joined the others Luca was trying to explain to Leo why we didn’t want him to be in on Umbreon’s conversation. Leo was a little upset, but for the most part just wanted to know what was going on, which Luca was having a difficult time explaining without getting into the more complicated conversation of sex. I knew how to fix this, but I wasn’t looking forward to it…

I went over and sat beside Leo, being careful not to sit on Tarzan. Leo looked up at me since Luca had stopped to let me take over. She was slightly embarrassed and had rather talked herself into a corner.

“Leo I think I better explain this later tonight alright?” I began, trying to get him to forget about this until we could talk about it somewhere other than the lobby…

With a disappointed groan Leo agreed, suspecting this was just another ploy to get him to forget about it. Why was Umbreon so embarrassed about Lady getting a check up? Why didn’t his mother want him asking what all those smells were…? All these things were driving him up a wall, let alone because he couldn’t get me or his mother to tell him anything.

Just after he groaned in agreement his ears perked and he looked up towards the center’s back room. Umbreon turned to see Lady walking out beside Nurse Joy, looking slightly concerned, but trying to hide it so that if Umbreon hadn’t come clean I wouldn’t have known the difference. Luca and I both followed his gaze to see Lady, however Luca couldn’t control herself any longer and ran to Lady, gently yet firmly wrapping her in a hug and telling her how happy she was.

Lady gave a deathly concerned look towards Umbreon who was now walking over to join the two women. He only smiled back at Lady as he licked her sweetly blatantly disregarding the fact that the entire center was watching them. Lady looked up at me with a now scared look but I simply remained beside Leo and smiled warmly as if to say, “I already know.” When she saw this Lady relaxed and nuzzled Luca lightly, whining happily in her ear. Once Luca got a reaction she let Lady go and stood up. Umbreon took over from there nuzzling Lady under her chin. Lady happily returned his affections cuddling his neck as he did so.

Meanwhile Nurse Joy made her way over to where I was sitting. Once there she turned and watched my companions with me. Luca soon walked back and Nurse Joy spoke up. “So I guess you already know hmm?” She said quietly and happily. “Ya. Umbreon just told me. He’s the father if you’re wondering.” I replied in the same tone.

Joy looked a bit surprised when I told her Umbreon had “told” me, but she quickly remembered I had Luca to translate for me. She smiled kindly once more and continued to tell me how far along Lady was and any actions I should take, but for the most part she said that I could leave it mostly up to Umbreon to take care of her, which suited me just fine since I knew he wouldn’t want it any other way.

With that taken care of I asked Joy if we could have a room and she gladly gave us one, but when we entered we got a surprise. She had given us a bigger room than I requested and with two beds. ‘Why would she…?’ I thought to myself, but didn’t even have time to finish the thought before Lady and Umbreon hopped up on the extra bed and lay down together. ‘Oh…’ I finished when I saw them and smiled to myself, I was so glad the two of them had decided to share such a bond and seeing Lady as happy as she was only made things better.

As I watched I failed to realize I was standing still and simply observing. That is until Luca came up beside me and took my arm in her paws as she leaned on my shoulder. I flinched at first, forgetting where I was but I quickly came to my senses and held my own mate close.

Leo and Tarzan simply looked at each other and sighed, both of them being too young to know what it’s like to have a mate. Tarzan soon padded over to a chair in the corner and set about cleaning himself up, then curled up while the rest of us went about our business. Leo however walked up and tugged on my pant leg to snap me and Luca out of our moment.

My son’s actions didn’t surprise me, and I looked away from Lady and Umbreon. I released Luca and moved to bend over to Leo. Luca released me, but turned to see what I was doing. When she saw me answering Leo’s unspoken plea she simple smiled and watched.

I knew what Leo wanted and I took a knee in front of him. He looked back at me with a somewhat sad expression, as if he expected me to make another excuse and leave him wondering again. Instead I wrapped him in a hug and lifted him up. He was surprised, but when I lifted him he relaxed and returned my embrace to steady himself. I had carried him several times recently and failed to notice his increase in size so it wasn’t hard for me to lift him. I turned to Luca who only smiled at us. I smiled back and headed towards the bathroom so Leo could take a bath while I talked with him.

Meanwhile Luca sat down next to Umbreon who looked up at her from his sitting position. The last thing I saw as I rounded the bathroom entrance was Luca hug Umbreon gently and Umbreon lick Luca’s cheek.

I ran a hot bath for Leo and he got in and started washing himself like he had become accustomed too. But as he began he spoke hesitantly. “Dad… I didn’t mean to be so nosey…”

I wasn’t helping him bathe and was simply giving him his privacy when he spoke. I noticed his tone sounded regretful which made me think he thought I was mad at him. I couldn’t blame him for this, after all I was the one that seemed to be avoiding the topic.

I sighed lightly and turned towards him, kneeling down beside the tub and began washing his back for him as I started talking. He flinched at first, failing to realize I had come down to his level, and despite his curiosity he was still rather modest. “Leo I didn’t mean to force you out of those situations… It’s just something I didn’t want you learning at the time…”

“What didn’t you want me to know? What were those smells before… and what’s wrong with Lady?” Leo asked with an added enthusiasm to his previous tone.

“Nothings wrong with her, she’s just going to have puppies… And Umbreon is their dad.” I replied calmly, trying to hide my nervousness.

“Then… What were those smells?” Leo asked again, but things were starting to make sense to him.

“Well… Lady was in heat. It’s the only time she could have puppies and her scent changes during that time…” I again replied, nervously searching for the right words.
“Oh… So what about the second smell?” Leo asked, but it seemed like he had already figured it out. Luckily I could talk comfortably about Lady and Umbreon though their actions was a different story.

“You noticed how Umbreon won’t leave Lady’s side right? That night Umbreon and Lady became mates, which is why he’s the puppies dad. I don’t have as sensitive a nose as you, but from what you’re saying that smell was probably from what they... did...” I continued, finally losing control and blushing, though thankfully Leo had turned away from me to wash his feet while he thought.

“Thanks dad...” Leo said almost shyly as he finished with his feet and continued to stare at the water and think.

“Anything else you wanted to ask me Leo?” I asked, regaining my composure and placing a hand on his shoulder.

“Umm… Yes. What did Umbreon want to say to you downstairs?” He said, turning just his head towards me, which is when I realized he seemed to be just as embarrassed as I was and was simply succeeding more in forcing himself to continue talking. He was blushing lightly which I wouldn’t have noticed if I hadn’t been so accustomed to spotting it through Luca’s fur.

I knew he was done washing off so I stood up and grabbed a towel for him as I began in a normal tone, with a sad twinge. “He wanted to be the one to tell me that Lady and him were mates, and that she was pregnant with his pups. He was afraid I would abandon him if I found out which is probably why he didn’t tell me when they first made the decision.”

“Why would he think you’d make him leave!? You’re not going to are you?!” Leo asked frantically as he stood up and spun quickly to look at me with worry filled eyes, wondering if it was because of such a punishment that I didn’t want him to know about all of this.

I knelt down on the floor before I replied, setting myself on Leo’s level again as I looked him in the eyes. My expression was sad, which only worried him more but I was sad for another reason, it hurt me somewhat that Umbreon would think I would force him to leave for loving Lady.

“No. I’m not making him leave… Umbreon just thought since Lady had been my dearest friend that if I found out they were together I would be mad. It’s simply how Umbreon thinks, and it’s because of what his old pack did to him…” Leo released the breath he had been holding and relaxed once I explained. He stepped out of the tub and I handed him the towel. I gave him one last kind smile as I stood back up to walk out. Before I made it out the door though, I heard him say, “Thanks dad…” quietly.

“No problem buddy.” I replied as I turned and rustled his wet head fur, getting a laugh from him as he fought me off to continue drying himself off.

I went out to see how everyone else was doing, and of course I found them all sleeping already. Umbreon curled up as usual with Lady, and oddly enough Luca was lying along the bed in front of them. It was a sweet sight but I didn’t want to let her stay where she was. I went over and gently rubbed my hand over her cheek. She moaned and tiredly opened her eyes to look at me.

She smiled weakly at me and started to stir but I had a different plan. I ran my hand quickly through her fur from her shoulder across her hip and down to her knees where I moved to pick her up, putting my other arm behind her shoulders to avoid knocking her off her balance and sending her crashing on the bed.

She giggled with what little energy she could muster. I cuddled her as I turned around and set her down on our bed where I joined her, as did Leo shortly after, and we quickly fell asleep.

The next morning I once again woke up before anyone else. I wanted to do the same thing I had done the day Luca had evolved for me but our group had grown quite a bit larger. I wriggled out of our bed, and managed to do so without waking Luca, who simply rolled over. Once I was free I gently woke Leo. He groaned and rubbed his eyes but when I asked him to help me he happily got up, stretched, and followed me down to get some food for everyone.

When we returned Leo took Tarzan’s breakfast over next to his chair, then set his mothers on the nightstand next to the bed. Meanwhile I went over to Lady and Umbreon’s bed and set their food down for them. Luckily for me they had both woken up when Leo and I got back. Lady raised her head, perked her ears and yawned, while Umbreon nuzzled her fur and slowly opened his eyes, only sitting up once he saw me. I gave them both a smile and pet Lady on the head before turning and kneeling beside Luca. With all the commotion she had started to stir but hadn’t committed to waking up yet, however I knew many ways to convince her to get up.

I lightly brushed her ear down and kissed her on her forehead, which got a smile out of her and something I hadn’t expected… She quickly reached a paw behind my head as I pulled away, pulling me back to her but this time she met me with her lips locking me in a sweet good morning kiss. Of course I didn’t fight back, which she only giggled at and rolled over to sit up on the bed.

Once she was upright she looked over at Leo who was sitting next to her eating his own breakfast and flipping through the tv channels for anything good, stopping once on the weather channel then proceeding to a gym report. Luca leaned over and gave him a kiss on the forehead which Leo responded to with a smile and a nuzzle.

Both Luca and I joined the others in eating our breakfast and before long we were packed up and heading out of the center. I knew there was a gym in town since I had looked this one up but I had no idea how tough it would be. Lucky enough for me we made it to the gym in time to see another trainer’s bout. From this I was able to gauge the level of the gym. When the battle was over the leader and trainer left for the center to get their pokemon healed, which gave me plenty of time to get ready for my own challenge.

From what I had seen and from what I knew my team was capable of, I knew for certain that we wouldn’t have a problem winning, but the best part was that Leo didn’t know that I planned to let him participate.

It was a round about gym which had no type focus, and I doubted that I would see the same pokemon as the match before, still I knew Leo could handle himself well enough for this gym and I planned on using him and Tarzan first with Umbreon as a backup. I didn’t think Luca would like me letting Leo battle in a gym match but I suspected that she knew he was ready and would be alright with it once I talked to her.

Once I had made up my mind and thought things through again I asked my companions, “Well, what do you think?” This got a glare from Lady that told me she thought this place was a push over for her and Luca. Luca only smiled at me, and Umbreon looked on innocently. Both Leo and Tarzan hadn’t answered so I addressed Leo first. “Hey! I asked you what you thought buddy.” I said sincerely which got him to look at me funny.

“Why?” He asked, sounding very confused, it hadn’t clicked with him yet, and I only laughed a bit before responding. “Do you think you could hold your own?” His eyes went wide with excitement, but I saw Luca’s look as well, though I could tell she wasn’t going to say something until she could get me alone.

“Really dad?! You want me to battle for your gym badge!?” He asked enthusiastically.

“Only if you want to. I think you’ll be fine, but I don’t want to force you…”

“No! I’ll do it!” Leo frantically interrupted so I couldn’t change my mind.

“Alright. Alright.” I replied with another laugh. I had expected his reaction but seeing it was better than I had thought. His eyes were wide with anticipation and excitement, and I could tell he simply wanted to tackle me he was so happy.

“Do you want to go practice with Tarzan then?” I asked with my voice returning to normal so he knew I was going to take this seriously.

“Sure!” He replied, and could hardly stand still as the rest of us got up to exit the gym for a short warm up. Along the way Luca stayed beside me and whispered her argument.

“Honey… Are you sure this is a good idea? Gym battles are tough… do you think he’s really ready? I mean this is a single battle gym, it’s not like what you let me and Lady do when I was younger.” She asked with an unmistakable concern.

“I think he’ll be fine. I know this feels strange and believe me it’s going to be hard for me to watch him in a hard fight, but I feel the same when you battle any more. I still worry to no end that I’m going to get you hurt.” I replied confidently, but caringly as well. She saw that this wasn’t something I had jumped into and relaxed somewhat. At first she had thought I was treating Leo like another pokemon and simply using him to battle for a badge, but I knew, as Luca did now, that couldn’t be farther from the truth.

When we made it outside I let Tarzan and Leo warm themselves up just as Luca and Lady often did. As I watched them I sat next to Umbreon and told him what I had planned. He looked at me while I spoke and listened intently, knowing how important this battle was going to be, not just for me but for Leo as well.

During his sparing match Leo seemed more determined than ever, and despite Tarzan becoming stronger by evolving Leo was really giving him a run for his money and not allowing him to get the upper hand. I stopped them after a while so they wouldn’t be too tired before the battle. They both came over with the rest of us where Tarzan curled up in the shade for a cat nap. Leo though was still full of excitement. He came over and asked me what else he should do to get ready. I didn’t even get up I simply smiled and replied. “Just relax. It’s no different than any other battle you’ve been in.” When I finished I saw him physically relax. Apparently he had been expecting a longwinded strategy speech and even though it hadn’t happened he wasn’t the least bit disappointed. He calmly replied. “Ok dad.” and sprawled out in the shade with Tarzan.

After letting the two of them rest for a bit we headed back inside. We timed things perfectly, as the leader had gotten back a short while ago and was willing to accept another challenge. I thanked him for being so generous and took my place on the field with my companions standing around me.

The attendant signaled the start and the leader let me make my first choice. At the start of the match I looked down to Tarzan and kindly told him, “You’re up!” He looked back at me and mewed before walking out onto the field to await his opponent.

The leader sent out a Larion first, which I knew, was bad news for Tarzan. However, he didn’t flinch and stood his ground as Larion focused its attention. The leader quickly gave Larion its orders and it roared as it started a charge, thundering towards Tarzan.

I was impressed that Tarzan didn’t even flinch in the face of this heavy weight opponent, he stood his ground until the last minute and leapt out of the way.

“Bite it on the back Tarzan!” I yelled as Tarzan flew over Larion who was now screeching to a halt to try getting a bead on its opponent again, but it was to late, Tarzan landed on its back and latched onto one of it’s plates with a clang, hooking his claws into any crevice that would help hold him in place.

Larion growled and raised its head to get a look at Tarzan from the corner of its eye. It began trying to shake Tarzan off by wobbling back and forth but Tarzan held fast. Since his original plan wasn’t working the leader instructed Larion to buck Tarzan off. I knew Tarzan couldn’t hold on forever and this could be his only chance to get in a solid hit. “Thunderfang!” I yelled to Tarzan who gladly obliged as he clung to Larion. Tarzan’s fur began crackling as sparks coalesced across his form and collected near his jaw. After this extremely short charge time Tarzan bit down harder on the plate in his mouth and released the attack, forcing all the energy straight into Larion’s form.

Being part rock type Larion only growled at the dull pain. It may have been a minor annoyance but the attack was significantly weakening it, which was only apparent because of its slowed bucking.

Tarzan poured as much energy into the attack as he could, but could not keep his grip on Larion and with the screech of fangs on steel Tarzan was bucked off, landing on shaky feet, but still able to fight. He growled at Larion as his fur began crackling again, indicating he had taken the initiative to use a charge attack. ‘Good boy.’ I thought and turned to Larion to see what it would do and wait for an opening to have Tarzan use thunder fang again.

Larion shook its head to dissipate the last of Tarzan’s attack and growled as it turned to face Tarzan, dragging its foot in the dirt as it readied another charge. “Take Down!” Its trainer ordered and Larion charged again.

Tarzan once again stared Larion down as it approached, and as it launched it’s attack Tarzan attempted to dodge, but couldn’t move fast enough this time and got broad sided by Larion. Tarzan winced at the impact but kept his determination and planted his paws when Larion’s forward momentum dissipated, leaving him inches from Larion with an attack ready.

“Thunderfang!!” I yelled and Tarzan eagerly focused the energy and latched onto one of Larion’s head spikes, dumping every last bit of energy he had stored into the attack. This time Larion howled in pain, taking the attack and as the energy faded head butting Tarzan to get him away.

Tarzan grunted at the hit and fell to his side, straining to get up but failing and collapsing in the dirt, breathing heavy while looking at Larion. The attendant pronounced Larion the winner as I withdrew Tarzan into his ball for a rest. Larion arrogantly clomped back to his position on the field as I knelt down to Leo.

“Alright buddy you got this. You know what you’re doing just listen to me for some advice, otherwise you’ve seen your mother battle you know I trust your judgment.” I said confidently as I looked him in the eye. I was still uncertain but I knew Leo wanted to do this and I couldn’t deny him now.

“Gotcha dad!” He replied enthusiastically and walked out on the field.

As I stood back up to await the beginning of the match Luca whispered nervously, “Felix, please don’t let Leo do this… Send me in you know I can handle this Larion.”

“It’s alright Luca, Leo will be fine. I know you can do this, but I can’t take him out, he’d be hurt that we didn’t believe in him.” I said trying my best not to reveal that I was also nervous about Leo’s first gym battle.

“Begin!” The attendant yelled and waved the flags. Sure enough Larion charged Leo right at the start. Leo took a stance and watched Larion, but I saw that he was hesitating as he stared Larion down.

“Leo! Force Palm!” I yelled to give him an action to focus on and to give him confidence as well. He stared for a short while longer at the charging Larion before lowering his stance.

Larion reached Leo, but was met with a lightning fast blow from Leo as he threw his paw into Larion’s face stopping the heavy pokemon cold. Larion was frozen in its position with Leo’s paw on its forehead. Leo didn’t move and just stared at Larion, wondering if he had succeeded.

After a few seconds Larion’s eyes rolled up into its head and it collapsed to its side unconscious. At this Leo relaxed and just looked at it, unable to believe he had managed to beat it just like his mother had beaten the Steelix in her previous gym battle. When the attendant announced the result the leader honorably withdrew Larion, while Leo looked towards me and his mother.

“You can look now.” I kindly whispered to Luca who was standing very close to me and had buried her face in her paws so she didn’t have to watch. When she peaked over her paws she saw Leo had done it and cheered once for him as she relaxed a little with the small comfort that Leo was holding his own nicely.

I gave Leo a smile and told him, “Good job! Now get ready, here comes your second opponent.” as I pointed towards the Leader who had just picked a pokeball from his belt. Leo turned towards the leader with more confidence that before, though it wasn’t long lived.

The ball released its passenger directly in front of Leo. Leo first watched the figures feet and slowly looked up its form to look it in the eyes. As he reached the pokemon’s face it spread its wings wide and looked back down at Leo, holding its blades in front of it menacingly.

The attendant began the match and the large Scyther quickly swung a blade at Leo’s head. “Leo!” Luca yelled as she brought her paws to her mouth again and watched the first blow in horror. I remained silent but at the same time I was really regretting not putting Umbreon in for this fight, and I knew painfully well that Leo wouldn’t have wanted me to take him out.

With a loud clang Scyther’s blade connected with Leo’s wrist. If it had connected with any other part of his body it would have cut him, but I was amazed at what Leo had figured out and done, and so quickly none the less. Scyther grimaced at Leo who now held the bug’s gaze with much less of an intimidated look. Leo had blocked the blade with the small steel patch on the back of his hand, effectively using it as a shield!

This gave me an idea, but I didn’t want to yell it across the field… “Leo Forcepalm! And make your way over here!” I yelled, trying to work the field, much as I used to do with Luca before we had wavespeech and before she could virtually predict what I had in mind for her.

Leo quickly charged his attack and thrust his free paw towards the Scyther’s abdomen, but the bug beat its wings and removed the blade from Leo to avoid the attack easily. As he missed Leo fell to all fours and leapt backwards away from Scyther. The bug looked surprised but quickly sped up its wing motions and raced forward towards Leo.

Seeing this Leo readied himself for another swipe of Scyther’s blades. Once he landed he quickly stood upright, just in time to start parrying Scyther’s attacks. The bladed bug was an excellent swordsman and effortlessly put its speed and grace into slashing at Leo. However, Leo was holding his own, though he was taking steps backwards as Scyther continued slashing.

Several clangs rang out in quick succession as the Scyther launched what I assumed to be false swipe attacks, but was met each time by Leo’s makeshift shields. Leo quickly got a feel for Scyther’s attacks, and was now a split second ahead of the bug’s blades instead of just managing to meet them. His eyes darted back and forth to ensure he blocked each slash, as he did so he kept a watch for when he could get an attack in.

At the moment there was nothing I could do to help him. He had made it to a quarter of the field’s length away from me and was steadily being pushed back but he had to break the onslaught of attacks before he would be able to concentrate enough to hear me. All the while Luca was at my side with a worried gaze as she was forced to watch Leo take hit after hit, though it didn’t seem to actually be hurting him.

After watching Leo take a good many of these hits I couldn’t take it any longer. I had to do something, which is when an action by Scyther gave me an idea. “Leo screech!” I yelled hoping this would work, and out of the corner of my eyes I saw Lady Umbreon and Luca hold their ears.

Leo immediately picked up my command and just as I yelled it Scyther landed another hit. Instantly after blocking the blade and positioning for the other incoming blade, Leo dragged his arm down Scyther’s blade, creating a horrendous sound of grinding metal. Unconsciously Leo laid his ears back before doing this, but the Scyther never saw it coming and howled as it was deafened by the nearby sound. Leo quickly took the chance to land a forcepalm to the Scyther’s chest then jumped back the rest of the distance until he was in front of me.

“Good job! Now here’s what I thought of. Use counter when Scyther hit’s you on your patches.” I spoke so only he could hear me.

“Thanks dad, I hear ya!” Was his reply before crouching slightly and sprinting towards Scyther to take the offensive for a change, though the one difference was that his left steel patch was emanating a red glow.

“Why didn’t you take him out of the match?” Luca asked sadly after Leo left. She was really broken up about this and I really couldn’t blame her, let alone I felt like I was ignoring her at the moment.

“Because he wants to do this. If I took him out he’d think I didn’t believe in him. He’ll be fine sweetie, I know he can do this.” I replied, but it again felt as if she hadn’t even heard me. She turned away from me with her sad eyes and continued watching Leo with her paws folded tight to her chest.

Leo rushed the Scyther and reached it just after it caught a glimpse of him. Scyther swung haphazardly with a blade, but Leo easily ducked it and landed a beautiful crosschop attack to Scyther’s chest once again. The bug recoiled and flapped it’s wings to stay upright as it regained itself, but Leo wasn’t going to give it the chance. He rushed it again but he had knocked it too far. Scyther swung it’s blade as hard as it could at Leo. Leo half yelped in surprise and skidded to a halt, bringing his paw up to defend and bracing it crossways with the other paw. The loudest clang of the match rang out, but it was Leo who had the upper hand. The paw he had blocked with had a counter charged on it…

The glow intensified rapidly and a scared look flashed over Scyther’s face a split second after his attack landed. Leo used his strength to push at Scyther’s blade, and triggered the counter, sending Scyther skidding backwards on the ground.

“Excellent!!!” I yelled at Leo who had relaxed now that his opponent was off its feet, but as the Scyther took a few breaths and got up Leo took his beginning fighting stance.

However, from this point on though the Scyther changed its tactics. The leader had realized that despite being small Leo was smart, so he had Scyther begin supporting more of its weight with its wings allowing it to move much quicker than before, let alone it was using agility to raise its speed even further, simply weaving and faking Leo out with advances and retreats while it bided its time. Finally the leader decided to strike and Scyther flew at Leo with its blades.

Leo kept his composure but there was nothing he could do now as Scyther had him clearly out paced. Leo managed to block the first swipe but the second grazed him leaving a lightly bleeding cut on Leo’s lower arm. He flinched and jumped back unsure of what to do, and I knew I had to help him.

“Leo counter again! Careful!!” I yelled at him but it was already to late. Scyther was headed at Leo with an aerial ace attack. Leo spun to see Scyther, who was still using its speed to out maneuver him, and crossed his arms in an attempt to release his counter, but Scyther head butted Leo full force and knocked him back onto the ground with a yelp of pain as he hit, lying there unconscious.

Thankfully the attendant knew the round was over and called it quickly, because Luca wasn’t about to wait for the verdict. With tears in her eyes she ran as fast as she could to Leo, picking him up quickly, cradling him, and as she turned from the Scyther towards me I came up to her and Leo, though the look she gave me was most likely worse than the one Scyther got…

I could see the pain in her eyes as she let her tears roll down her cheeks, and before I could even offer a comforting gesture or word she vanished, using extreme speed, which I guessed meant she was taking Leo to the center.

“Looks like your pokemon could use some training! You’re welcome to stay here to do it.” The leader yelled to me from his spot, standing casually and not realizing the insult he had just given me. It took every bit of control I had not to run over and knock the guy out. With a glare I turned and returned to my spot, I wasn’t going to forfeit… I couldn’t do that to Leo…

When I returned to my place Umbreon looked up at me. I returned his gaze and nodded, and he walked out on the field. He had a completely different personality when he battled now, which I could only attest to our battles with Darkrai, he almost entirely forgot his kind timid nature and followed through fully with any attack he launched. Lady actually loved this side of him, it showed just how strong Umbreon was, and she knew she was one of the reasons he battled like this.

The attendant promptly started the bout and Scyther continued using its speed. It rushed Umbreon but Umbreon kept its gaze with an unflinching nerve. Just as Scyther was about to slash Umbreon he launched a powerful dark pulse right into its chest. The ball exploded into multicolored sparks, sending Scyther hurdling backwards and landing him on the ground. With an extremely surprised look Scyther scrambled to its feet, but Umbreon wasn’t advancing, only standing there staring Scyther down.

“Quick attack.” I instructed Umbreon sadly. The leaders comment had cut me deeply but this was one battle I was going to win… for Leo.

Umbreon heard my instruction and carried it out without hesitation. He rocketed off with his vapor trail, tackling Scyther again in the chest then landing on his feet facing his target once again, though this time Scyther couldn’t get up and fell unconscious as he hit the ground from Umbreon’s impact. Once the attendant announced the result Umbreon walked back to his original spot.

The leader had a dumbfounded look on his face as he withdrew his Scyther, no doubt surprised that I had a pokemon that strong. Little did he know I was only challenging him to get Leo and Tarzan some experience, now that that was over, the gloves were off and he was going to pay for hurting Leo, though I knew Leo really wasn’t badly hurt.

The leader almost reluctantly sent out his next choice, an Espeon that I had seen earlier today. The Espeon growled at Umbreon but he only looked at it with a sad uncaring look, as if he didn’t really want to battle her but also conveying that he wasn’t going to back down.

Lady yipped at Umbreon just before the attendant started the final bout. Umbreon perked his ears towards the sound but didn’t turn, and I could only guess that Lady had offered some last minute encouraging words to him to aid in what ever regrets he probably had about fighting another Eevee evolution.

Continuing with the leader’s intimidation theme Espeon immediately rushed Umbreon, charging her tail with an iron tail attack and spinning around quickly to try knocking Umbreon in the head.

“Bite Umbreon.” I instructed, but got the usual feeling that I was just a formality, for as Espeon attacked Umbreon simply ducked the blow and bit her leg as I instructed. He put energy into the attack but he always managed to avoid actually hurting his opponents unless he was mad. This time Espeon yelped and regained her footing limping slightly but not bleeding from Umbreon’s bite, though she would have a nice bruise. She tried staring him down again but of course it worked no better than last time and Umbreon just waited for an instruction from me or for her to attack.

I could tell from Espeon’s movements she was about to attack again so instead I had Umbreon attack first. “Faint attack Umbreon!” I yelled, and Umbreon widened his stance before fading from site.

Espeon immediately got a worried look and started looking around. frantically trying to find Umbreon’s direction of attack. She managed to spot him as he rematerialized to her left, but was unable to avoid the hit as his head connected hard with her flank. She yelped again as she hit the ground and scrambled to her feet as Scyther had done earlier. She continued to lock gazes with Umbreon but behind her determined stare lay a look of hopelessness, she now knew all too clearly that Umbreon was way out of her league.

Umbreon looked over his shoulder at me with a questioning look, asking whether he should continue or not. “It’s alright Umbreon go ahead. Just don’t hurt her.” I said to him, getting a nod back as he turned his head back to Espeon, though her expression now showed she was scared out of her mind from what I had said.

Umbreon took a few steps towards her and she hesitantly retreated, stopping momentarily to look sadly back at her own trainer. He saw how shaken she was and to everyone’s surprise he conceded defeat!

“I believe I’ve underestimated you…” The leader began as he crossed the field to me with Espeon falling into step beside him, but still seeming rather timid towards Umbreon and I. “Espeon can read minds. If you scared her that bad you really are strong enough to hurt her. I’m sorry about what I said earlier.” He continued sincerely.

“You should be. Leo and Tarzan are just my newest additions.” I responded calmly. I was somewhat upset about what he had said but I really just wanted to get to the center to see Luca and Leo.

“Well for what it’s worth I am sorry and I shouldn’t have said that. Thanks for not hurting Espeon… Here. Here’s the gym’s badge.” He said seriously, honestly sounding like he meant every word.

“No problem, and thanks.” I answered as I took the badge and headed out of the gym towards the center. When we got there Leo was already up and about. Joy had bandaged his small cut, and he was perfectly fine now, though Luca was a different story. She was pretty upset with me, and of course I knew why, and even though Leo was fine I could think of no way to justify what happened for Luca. When he saw us enter the building Leo ran to me, but Luca staid where she was.

“Well did you win?!” He asked enthusiastically and nervously at the same time. I knelt down and took the badge out of my pocket to show him.

“Yup, and it’s all thanks to you. Umbreon couldn’t have taken out that Scyther without your help.” I told him kindly, and after admiring the badge he looked to Umbreon who sighed tiredly, like it was an extremely tough fight for him.

“Thanks dad.” Leo responded happily, and as I stood up to walk over to Luca he stayed by my side.

We stayed at the center again that night but I could tell Luca was avoiding me, she wouldn’t come close to me, even when we went to bed that night. It really hurt me to see her like this and I had to say something, even if I only made things worse...

“Honey, I’m sorry…” I began quietly as she lay there with her back to me. For an agonizingly long few seconds she didn’t move, and when she did she simply rolled over to look at me. I remained quiet as she moved, the look she was giving me was both sad and mad which wasn’t something I saw very often from her, and it hurt, a lot.

“…Why’d you let him fight in that gym battle…?” She asked quietly as she kept my gaze.

“I’m not entirely sure... You know how much battling means to Leo, and you saw how excited he was to win that badge…” I tried to explain calmly, but I got the feeling that my argument wasn’t very well supported.

“He’s your son! How could you let him do something like that…? Why would you even suggest it to him…?” She interrupted becoming more upset with me.

“…I can’t just protect him from battles and only let him enter ones he can win… Luca, I can’t tell you how hard it was to see that happen… It only reminded me of when I got you hurt in the tournament…” I replied humbly as I looked down at Leo who was sleeping peacefully between Luca and I.

“I’m different I can handle myself… Leo wasn’t ready yet, he’s not strong enough. You didn’t let me compete until I evolved why did you let him?” She again spoke frantically, now getting tears in her eyes, but remaining still and quiet so as not to wake Leo or anyone else.

That was all I could take and I stopped trying to make her feel better by admitting my fault. She must have forgotten some of her younger battles, but I never could. She always tried to be brave for me, but when she did get hurt I would have to comfort her for quite some time, though I always knew she liked having me close.

“Do you think that makes it easier for me!? Every time you step in the ring I worry that something’s going to happen to you. I made a big mistake letting you battle in that tournament… I almost lost you… then Lady in the contest… I figured if it was a gym battle the leader would at least know when to stop and wouldn’t hurt Leo if he didn’t succeed…” I sighed and paused but not long enough for Luca to respond. “…I hate doing this to you, Leo and the others. I wish I could stop battling and just travel with you, but that wouldn’t be fair. I know how much you enjoy fighting for me, you’ve told me so yourself. Leo enjoys battling as well… he takes after you… he is so determined not to disappoint me that I have no doubt he would do just as much for me as you would…” I trialed off as what I said really sank into my mind, and looked away from Luca.

My eyes were beginning to water as well but Luca was speechless. She couldn’t bring herself to be as mad as she was before because my voice made it clear I meant every word I said, yet she couldn’t say things were alright because she and I both knew they weren’t.

“Felix…? Why didn’t you tell me you didn’t want to battle anymore?” She asked after a long pause, and moved in a little closer to Leo and I, though her voice no longer had a tone of anger to it.

“I told you… you take so much pride in fighting for me, defending me when you get the chance, and I couldn’t bear to take that away from you… or Leo. Plus I don’t mind battling, I know you’re different than other pokemon and it doesn’t matter what other trainers think of us, but no matter what I always worry… It’s not just what happened to you and Lady last year. I’ve always worried about you guys, ever since I first got Lady… Now that you’ve watched Leo battle like that you know how I feel. I go through that every time one of you takes a hit… and I feel it nearly ten times as much when you get hit…” I wasn’t trying to make her feel bad or to distract her, which as far as I knew was probably what she thought I was doing. I hadn’t planned on ever telling her how I felt about this because I knew what she would do. She would deny herself the one thing she enjoyed doing for me.

“Luca, I’m sorry I worried you so much about this, I never meant to. I shouldn’t have gone through with this without discussing it with you first, but I guess I got caught up in it once we got to the gym and I knew how much Leo would want to… I shouldn’t have assumed you’d be alright with it…Mmmph?!” I continued sadly as I regained myself, still not looking at Luca, only I was interrupted as I finished.

Quick as a wink Luca put her paw on my cheek and pulled me into a kiss. She held me for only a second before she broke the kiss and locked gazes with me again, though I only had a wide eyed confused look. I was hoping her gesture meant what I thought it did, and I wasn’t sure until I looked in her eyes. She smiled lightly at me with her eyes half lidded which showed me I was right, she at least understood why I had let Leo battle, and though she may not be entirely over it at the moment she forgave me a little bit After a moment of our gaze she let her paw fall from my cheek and gently rubbed Leo’s head across his ear, eliciting a content smile from him. Without a word she got comfortable beside him, while still facing my way, and fell asleep leaving me the only one awake.

‘She really is too good for me…’ I thought as I watched my mate and son sleeping peacefully for a while before getting some rest myself.

When we woke up the next morning I called home to fill them in on all the news. Leo was beaming when I told my mother how he won us a badge, and though it was good news Lady and Umbreon were very embarrassed when I told mother about Lady’s condition. Of course mother wanted us to come home right away, but we had only just left and I wasn’t about to head back so soon.

Through the night it seemed as though Luca had forgiven me a bit more since she was standing close beside me again. Once we had finished our explanations we headed out of the center and left town, however something seemed to be bothering Leo. He wouldn’t say anything, but he would rub his paw and stretch them every now and then.

Lady was the first to notice and once she did she nosed Leo’s paw with a small whine and gave him a covert concerned look that neither me nor Luca noticed. Leo looked back to her but wouldn’t speak. She knew why so she licked him playfully on the cheek and spun as she walked, lightly whapping Leo in the face with her tails. Leo laughed and tried to catch the now retreating tails. Umbreon joined the two in their little game but they soon stopped playing and started talking. Meanwhile Luca and I smiled at the trio and started talking ourselves.

“Sweetie, you’re not mad at me are you…?” Luca began quietly, not wanting the others to overhear.

“No. If anyone should be mad it’s you… Are you alright?” I replied caringly.

“I’m fine… I was upset that you would do that to Leo… I hadn’t considered what Leo wanted or what you went through when I battled for you. I’m fine with it now though, really.” She replied, grabbing my arm before responding, but I knew she really wasn’t ok with me letting Leo battle that hard.

“I know you’re just trying to make me feel better. Thank you, but I don’t want you letting this go unless you want to. I’m not your master you don’t have to do everything I want. Watching you carry Leo away I knew I made a big mistake… I’m really sorry honey…” was my response as I grabbed her paw with my hand.

“Alright.” She said as she blushed slightly and leaned on me.

While we talked Lady asked Leo what was bothering him, “It’s my paws… They won’t stop aching, I must have hurt them in the battle, but I didn’t do anything that would cause this did I…? So why won’t it stop?” He replied to Lady’s question, wringing his paws with is last statement. Umbreon simply walked with them while Lady took care of things.

“You should tell your dad he can get the nurse to check your paws, or you could ask Joy yourself.” Lady responded, again with her obviously concerned tone.

“I know but I don’t want to worry mom. She was really mad at dad for letting me fight in that gym battle, and I don’t want to get her mad at dad again. It looks like they just talked it over.” Leo said as he looked ahead at Luca and I to see his mother holding my arm as we walked.

“Well then at least let me see…” Lady said as she craned her head to look at Leo’s paws. Leo obliged and held out his paws for her to look at. After a short time of not being in motion Leo couldn’t help himself and flexed them, which shocked Lady.

“Leo, your paws bend like that!?” She said in a worried tone, afraid that something was wrong with him.

“I know. They didn’t used to but I can bend them almost as if I had fingers like dad. It feels better when I bend them but only for a little bit.” He replied in a casual tone despite Lady’s obvious concern.

“You have to talk with Nurse Joy. She would know what’s going on… Your mother’s paws don’t do that Leo. It’s probably something you got from Felix but if it’s hurting you, you should let them know. Just show them I’m sure they won’t jump to conclusions, they’ll be fine.” She reassured him, but ultimately left the decision up to him.

“Mom, Dad. I need to ask you something…” Leo said as he Lady and Umbreon came up to walk beside us. I had almost forgotten they weren’t with us during my short talk with Luca.

“Sure honey what is it?” Luca replied cheerfully as she bent down to his level.

“Lady says I should tell you… My paws hurt…” he said hesitantly, still unsure what Luca’s reaction would be, and of course he was right in what she thought. She immediately turned to me with a concerned look that told me she thought this was a result of the gym battle.

“You didn’t hurt your paws in the battle did you?” I asked in a concerned voice, but not frantically as I too knelt down and held my hands out for Leo to show me his paws.

“No I don’t think that’s it. It started after the battle… or before I’m not sure which, but it got worse today.” He explained, now letting himself get worried that something might be wrong with him.

I squeezed his paws gently and noted his reaction. He never winced and everything I did seemed to make him feel better for a short time. After a while he said he wanted to show me something and flexed his paws much like I could move my own fingers. I was surprised but didn’t react the same way Lady had, though Luca got a worried and surprised expression when she saw this.

Now I was worried though. If he could do that I knew in general why he was having pains. It was something he got from me… A Riolu’s or Lucario’s paws weren’t meant to move that much like a human hand, which admittedly made things hard for Luca but she had become accustomed to it and could perform nearly every task I could without difficulty. Still I really felt bad that it was because I was his father that Leo had to endure such a pain, and what made it worse was that I didn’t know if he would grow out of it.

“We’ll ask Nurse joy when we see her again. Until then I can’t do much buddy. You gonna be ok for a while?” I said as I gently massaged his paws a bit seeing as it relieved his pain somewhat.

“Ya I’ll be fine. It’s a dull pain really, nothing to sharp, but it’s annoying.” He replied as he watched my effort at treatment.

“Ok. And for what it’s worth Leo, I’m sorry. It’s because of me you have to deal with this.” I responded sadly, silently hoping this really was only temporary.

“It’s alright dad. I won’t let it bother me.” He said in an effort to comfort me seeing as he now knew it was me instead of his mother that he had worried.

That night Luca and I stayed up to talk about Leo, she was the first to say something and frantically wanted to fix this, but in her hurry she failed to realize just how hard I was taking this.

“Do you think he’ll be alright?” She began but was only met with silence on my part, as I looked over our sleeping son. “Felix I asked you if he’ll be alright!” She continued, become scared that I hadn’t replied.

“I’m sure he’ll be fine honey, we’ll ask Nurse Joy when we get the chance and she’ll be able to explain it…” I said sadly when I realized I had been asked a question, but I kept my gaze on Leo.

“But… Felix? What’s wrong?” She began with an argument but stopped after the first word when she realized I simply wouldn’t look away from Leo.

“Why him? Why us…? Why ME? If I weren’t his father this wouldn’t be happening. This isn’t fair Luca.” I finally managed to blurt out angrily, though it was an unseen force I was mad at, not Luca. I was upset but wasn’t crying, it was simply so frustrating to watch something like this and know it was because of you.

“Shh… Felix, do you think he’ll be alright?” She replied caringly, taking a stronger tone to calm me down as she grabbed my hand with her paw. She was obviously still concerned, and wanted an opinion from me but she saw it was bothering me as well. Seeing what she was doing for me I calmed down as well.

“Like I said… I think he’ll be fine. But I hate the fact that I did this to him… and essentially to you…” I replied looking back to Leo, but Luca wasn’t done and with a small sigh of relief she continued.

“As long as you think he’ll be alright I’m sure he will be. And you know I would never want anyone else to be his father, even if I had met another Lucario. I feel bad about this too but it’s not something either of us could have foreseen…” Her voice was so soft and caring, but there was a confident air to it, as if I really had convinced her everything was fine even though I wasn’t sure myself, but as she continued she leaned on me and cuddled my shoulder as her voice shifted to a more loving tone, but kept the same sweet characteristic I loved so much about her. “…Felix do you remember that night? At first I thought I was a wrong to have fallen for you. I thought I was too young and that I was lost in my heat like Lady had warned me, and what you said the first time I asked scared me that you would never see me the same again. But after you showed me how you felt you warned me we could be compatible… Do you think, if I had known this would happen that I wouldn’t have ended up with you? If you do, you’re wrong… We’ll help Leo through this and we’ll figure it out.”

About half way through her words I shifted and hugged her while she continued. “I know… And thank you. I get so worried when I don’t have an answer for things like this, but you’re right all we can do is help him through it.” As I spoke I held her tight. Holding her was the only thing I could have done to comfort myself and I was glad she didn’t mind that I was so clingy sometimes, though I suspected she actually enjoyed it as much as I did. After awhile I released her and we sat together, we weren’t very tired at the moment and didn’t want to leave the others so we simply sat there and talked quietly.

“You know I’m going to have my heat soon right?” She asked rather sheepishly as she folded her paws in her lap. I practically gagged when she said this but when I thought about it, she was right.

“You know that’s not the best way to start conversation sweetie…” I replied coyly, giving her an accusing look which only made her giggle, but I continued in a more serious, but sad voice. “Should we really have another kid though with what’s happening to Leo…?”

“I know… And I didn’t think you would want another son or daughter with every one of my heats so I asked Nurse Joy about something…” She replied in a normal tone though with the slightly embarrassed piece she always used when we were talking about the topic. She trailed off and reached into my pack, pulling out the little white box she had dropped in there a few days before and showing it to me. “Joy gave me these. She said the human equivalent is a “morning after pill.” I think I know what that means but she said these were developed for Pokemon trainers who didn’t want their pokemon getting pregnant during their heats.”

“I didn’t know they had such a thing… Are you sure you’re alright with this? Don’t do this simply for me Luca. I would never be upset about having kids with the girl I love, even if it was one per year.” I said caringly. I was actually relieved she had found a way around getting her pregnant but if it wasn’t what she wanted I didn’t want to use the option.

“Thank you…” She said as she set the box back in my pack and nuzzle me before continuing. “But I’m not ready to have another child yet either. And I want to know what’s happening to Leo as well. There’s no guarantee another one of our kids will go through it but you’re right it’s something we should consider.” She closed her eyes and leaned a bit harder onto me, letting me support more of her weight as she relaxed, however she wasn’t falling asleep. I let my hand fall to her hip and I lightly stroked her fur, occasionally running my hand down and stroking her tail once, which began to flick about happily. She moaned happily after a while and wiggled a little but remained in the same position. After a while of my treatment I let my hand fall idle on her thigh. It took a short time but as my hand rested there I could feel a slightly warmer air…

“So your heat’s just under two month’s away right…?” I casually asked once I realized what I had discovered.

“Yes...” She replied timidly, since she knew what I was talking about and she couldn’t deny it, but at the same time she opened her eyes slightly and realized something herself…

“You know I didn’t think human males had heats…?” She continued as she brushed a paw over my pants which had become somewhat tighter since the beginning of our conversations.

‘Damn… I should have known she would tease me back if I started this…” I thought to myself as I blushed a bit from her actions. “Well everyone’s asleep, want me to help you out?” I whispered sweetly in her ear.

She giggled a little then looked up at me cutely, but asked a serious question. “Why is it that you only do this for me and never me for you?”

“That’s a silly question… You come first. That’s that.” I replied playfully as I nuzzled her cheek roughly, knowing she enjoyed it when I acted like this with her.
She laughed lightly, still trying to keep her voice down and fought back, pinning me on the ground and continuing. “Fine but I still owe you for that night in the center… It’s about time I repay that debt…” As she spoke her second sentence she lowered herself down to me, lying on top of me and cuddling me as I lay there. I didn’t see any point in fighting with her. She could force her decision on me if she really wanted too, though I knew she never would without my consent.

“Well. Can my sweet Lucario keep her voice down so we don’t wake our son?” Playing the part she smiled and licked my chin when I had finished. “No no.” I added and put my finger under her chin to make her look up at me and quickly locked her in a kiss. After a long while we broke our kiss and I was able to add again. “That’s how you kiss, I won’t have you acting like a pokemon. You’re too special.”

She giggled as she got up off me and said, “But I am a pokemon…” as she walked on all fours a short distance away, just so we were out of sight of the camp. Once we were I responded, “No. You’re my Luca!” and hugged her from behind, pulling her upright again and getting a short “Eep” and a laugh from her but no resistance. I sat down and leaned on a tree as I held her in front of me, massaging her sides with my hands and gradually moving lower.

She squirmed in my embrace as I continued south, and once I reached her entrance I didn’t waist any time. Unlike in the center Luca knew what I was doing and wasn’t suddenly surprised to have me fondling her. She put a paw behind my head to hold me close as I started rubbing her outer lips. After a few strokes I focused my thumb on her clit which made her gasp quietly into the night as she got more and more aroused. She was succeeding very well at breathing rapidly without making an actual sound.

For how quickly I was proceeding my actions were slow and steady. I continued rubbing her lips with my fingers and gradually pressed a little harder, making smaller and smaller motions until my movements were confined to her actual opening. By this time she was tensing up and was becoming quite wet, which only allowed me to quicken my pace.

As I continued to run over her slit I pressed slightly harder with each stroke, gradually working a single finger inside her. With a digit inside her I began massaging her tunnel, it was so warm and soft I couldn’t help but close my eyes and picture what I was feeling as I cuddled her with my head which she was already holding firmly to her shoulder with a paw.

She started lightly thrusting onto my hand as best she could, but with a slow and irregular pace. I carefully worked a second finger in with the first and continued to massage her every internal contour while still rubbing circles around her clit with my thumb. I knew she was enjoying this… greatly, and I wanted to give her the entire sensation.

I gradually worked my fingers in deeper, millimeter by millimeter until I was in up to my knuckles. I kept moving around in her, probing every spot that I could find, hoping I could manage to discover again what I did the other time. Finally she started to make a few sounds as she tensed her muscles more frequently, pushing her shoulders back against me and arching her back slightly as she tried to force me deeper. Each time I felt her muscle tenses both inside and out.

Her walls were completely covered in her fluids now and a few squelches could be heard as I continued to move. My hand was also covered in her nectar but that meant little to me, and so did the fact that some of the excess was dripping onto my own pants.

With each tense of her muscles I felt her getting closer, I was determined that I would be the one to give her what she wanted and not to let her motions end it. I twisted my fingers slightly and prodded a different place. Much to my delight she squeaked and tensed, taking pressure off of the spot I had found, though not for long…

Keeping my fingers in the same position I withdrew them nearly all the way out of her and stopped my thumbs constant motions, which got a whine of displeasure as she held my head closer. I knew it was mean but I slowly pushed my way back in running my fingers along her wall. When I reached the spot I had noted before I pressed slightly harder than my gentle glide and began rubbing in that specific spot as I redoubled my thumbs efforts, rubbing her clit harder and faster than before.

She gasped in pleasure, though not loud enough for anyone to hear, and tensed her body, relaxing and repeating several times in an erratic pattern until she finally lost control and did so twice in quick succession. Through her motions I kept on my target, rubbing and massaging her flesh. When she finally hit the point of no return I felt her soft walls grab my fingers, though even this couldn’t stop their caress. I quickened my pace again and rubbed harder on that spot, fighting her convulsions and prolonging her bliss as she gasped quietly and held my head to hers like a vise with one paw and held my hand inside her with the other.

When I felt her sensations beginning to fade I slowed my motions and released pressure gradually, stopping my thumbs motion first and dragging my soaked fingers across her walls as I slowly pulled them out, eliciting a few last tenses from her as she caught her breath. She half released my head, only keeping her paw in place, no longer holding me still. I knew she was still coming down so I tenderly used my hand to stroke her swollen lips getting a few moans from her as she regained the last of her lost breath.

“Al…right… It’s your… tur…ahh…” she managed through her tired gasps as she attempted to get up, but was unable to stand due to her shaking legs, and the fact that she was fighting off an afterglow nap, which she knew if she gave in to would last until morning.

As she crashed back down onto me I caught her and held her where she was so she didn’t fall completely to the ground. “You’re to tired honey, don’t worry about it. I told you you’re the only one that matters.” I whispered in her ear as I nuzzled her and didn’t let her move even though she was trying.

“No… I won’t do this again…” She replied as she struggled even weaker in my arms. I loosened my grip lightly as she started to fade. She was determined but couldn’t win and eventually laid her head on my shoulder, giving up entirely but still finding the strength to speak. “Damnit Felix… How do you always do… this… to… me……” With that she fell asleep on my shoulder. I smiled to myself as she did so, even though I had essentially denied myself again I didn’t care, it was enough for me to simply have her sleeping in my arms, she didn’t have to return anything to me.

After a while I joined her and fell asleep myself with my head drooping down and resting on her shoulder.

Conveniently the morning sun woke both Luca and I up the next morning. She was a little upset with me about last night but I was able to get her to forgive me pretty easily by teasing her about the events. When she finally couldn’t help herself she cracked a smile and gave in saying, “Fine, but next time you go first…” in a playfully yet eerily serious tone.

We went back to the campsite and washed off a little with our water. Of course we could only hope that Leo wouldn’t catch Luca’s scent and ask why we both smelled the way we did… or if he did that he wouldn’t bring it up to us since neither of us had the fortitude to try explaining it to him.

When everyone got up we headed off. Luckily Leo didn’t mention anything though I think he knew what happened, but other than silently thinking about it while walking he tried not to show it. Lady and Umbreon though were somewhat less conspicuous. Lady would occasionally brush a tail under Luca’s chin and give her an accusing look, which made Luca blush and try to change the implied subject. Umbreon as usual was embarrassed by such things and his rings glowed slightly brighter for a while whenever Luca and I looked playfully to him as if he had a teasing comment. After the first mile Lady stopped teasing Luca so much, though unknown to me Luca wanted to talk with Lady alone and got the chance later that night.

We settled down like any other night and I was about to gather up some firewood when Luca asked Leo to help me and Lady nudged Umbreon to go with us as well. Tarzan had gotten tired and was resting in his ball, but with how indifferent he was the girls probably wouldn’t have minded him. In any case we left the ladies alone and went to gather some wood.

“That seemed way to easy…” Luca began as she watched the three boys leave the site.

“Hmm. Not when you think about it. Felix was going anyway, and Leo is happy to help his father. Umbreon would have been the most difficult to get rid of and he’ll do almost anything I ask him.” Lady replied cheerfully, half joking about how loyal Umbreon was to her.

“You enjoy that don’t you?” Luca said with an accusing tone but Lady was ready with another retort.

“What ever do you mean…? And you can’t tell me Felix isn’t like that… I know for a fact that he would do anything you sincerely asked him to.” Her voice was still playful, but shifted to a serious tone to let Luca know that she really did know what she was talking about.

Musing, Luca sighed and looked to where the boys had walked off. “He does anything and everything for me but why doesn’t he let me do something for him?” She asked Lady without looking towards her.

“He does the same to me... The only thing he consciously LETS me do for him is battle, and even then he worries about me… I’ve known you nearly your entire life, you’re like a kit to me. Don’t take this the wrong way but you’re so loving, you don’t want to do anything if Felix says even a wavering no. It’s not a bad thing to be so dedicated and I know Felix is the same way. The only difference is that he knows when he can do something for you without your consent and make you happy despite the fact that he technically disobeyed you. If you do something special for him he won’t get mad, he simply doesn’t like to let people do things for him. He doesn’t want you to feel like you have to do something for him in return… which I’m assuming is why both of you were covered in only your scent this morning…” As Lady shared her opinion on what she gathered was Luca’s problem she laid down and rested her head on Luca’s lap. Luca listened to her surrogate mother and lightly ran her paw over Lady’s fur as she relaxed. When Lady finished she looked up at Luca with a playful gaze, which made Luca blush and look away, but still got an immediate answer.

“Well… Yes… He, uh… made me go first… and he’s so damned good to me…” She said, uncomfortably explaining the basics of what happened the night before. Lady snickered a little and nuzzled Luca’s leg then started again.

“You know he doesn’t know exactly what he’s doing… True he helped me with my heat a few times… more when I forced him to… but I think he’s only doing what he thinks you’ll like, and you’re the only one he’s ever truly wanted to please both in that way and others. I know he took care of me intimately and made it very nice for me, but you’re special to him in a way I can’t be, just like I hope that I’m special to Umbreon.”

“But he held me tight afterwards so I couldn’t do anything!” Luca stated more frustrated than angry, but Lady only laughed.

“Then make him go first, deny him the enjoyment of pleasing you. He doesn’t like it but he won’t argue very much if you push the issue. Trust me, he melts every time if you show him just how far you’re willing to go for him. He already knows you love him, but remind him of just how much.” Lady replied cheerfully as she rolled over onto her back allowing her to look up at Luca more easily. She wasn’t joking, but with her personality she always found these conversations to be fun rather than embarrassing, unlike Felix and Umbreon, which is the reason Luca always had someone she could go to.

Luca giggled lightly and looked down at Lady, removing her paw while Lady rolled then gently stroking the fox’s belly, which despite being sentient she still enjoyed greatly. Luca was still blushing as she found the nerve to continue with a voice that matched how she felt. “Umm… Lady…? I don’t really know what I’m doing either…could you… maybe give me some idea…?” She managed nervously, wondering two things at the same time. First was if she should really be asking this since she knew how much of a tease Lady could be and especially towards Felix, and second how she could bring herself to ask the female she viewed as a mother figure for sex tips…

Lady giggled cutely at the question and rolled over as she gave her answer. “Sure I can.” With that she went over to Felix’s pack and nosed around until she found one of the snack sticks he always carried for a quick bit to eat. He carried several and they were cheap so Lady doubted he would notice if one went missing for some strange reason…

“Ok. I know this isn’t… realistic… but bear with me…” Lady began with Luca beat red under her fur yet listening carefully as Lady explained.

‘I wonder what Lady and Luca wanted to talk about…?’ I reluctantly thought to myself as we picked up a few last sticks to take back to camp. ‘That fox will be the death of me if I know her…’ I continued as I took a large stick Umbreon brought me. Leo was standing beside me with a larger bundle than me which I knew I shouldn’t have been ashamed of, but it was pretty pathetic from my view. “Well I think that’s enough, lets head back you two.” I said which got a yip out of Umbreon as he picked up another stick, and a smile from Leo as he replied, “Hey dad I think my pile’s bigger.”

“Very funny… And I’ll bet your mother notices that too…” I said teasingly, though I knew I was only making fun of myself.

We got back to the campsite to find Lady lying on Luca’s lap with Luca stroking her gently, nothing seemed out of the ordinary and I didn’t have a valid reason to suspect anything so I put my worries out of my mind. Sure enough however, as we came within sight Luca giggled and commented on how Leo out did me. Leo laughed while I turned up my nose playfully and went to start building a fire, halfway through witch I smiled over at Luca just to ensure she knew I wasn’t really mad.

I was content to light the fire on my own but as I went to my pack Lady casually blew a flamethrower at the makeshift ring, instantly setting the wood ablaze and cutting the first few branches burning duration by over half. Of course this action wasn’t without folly, as anything with Lady rarely was.

Umbreon had been setting his stick down where I had piled the extra wood and as the stick dropped from his mouth he looked up to see a flamethrower heading towards him. He yelped and jumped out of the way even though the attack stopped well short of him. He gave a scared look to Lady who only smiled cutely at him. Once he saw this Umbreon growled teasingly at her which made her eyes go wide as she slowly stood up and started towards him. Umbreon’s eyes also went wide as she did this and he whimpered as he took a few steps back from her, laying his ears back and dropping his tail as well, cowering before his mate.

However Lady continued towards him, staring him down the whole way and getting nose to nose with him when she reached him, while still holding his gaze. Umbreon cowered before her shaking a little until she licked his nose sweetly. Once she did this he really looked her in the eyes and stopped shivering, he saw her look and nuzzled her cheek, though he intended to pay her back for her second trick of the night…

When he was within reach of her ear he growled as he had before and nibbled her ear just enough for her to feel, but not enough for it to hurt. This time Lady yelped and raised her head to escape and give Umbreon a surprised look, but he was a step ahead of her this time and rubbed her neck and shoulders lovingly. Lady murred lovingly as well and returned Umbreon’s cuddle before lying down with him a few feet away from the fire.

As I searched my back pack I saw Lady light the fire. I gave her a teasingly annoyed look which she responded to with a smile before looking at Umbreon. As they went through their own jokes Luca pulled me roughly away from my pack. I wasn’t expecting this and I fell to the ground with my head coming to rest in her lap. At the moment I felt more like Umbreon as I looked up at my mate’s loving gaze while she ran her paw over my forehead and through my hair. Shortly after I ended up in that position Leo came over and leaned on Luca’s back, draping his arms over her shoulders, as I had done many times before, and nuzzling her cheek with his head. Seeing this I sat up beside her and watched as she returned his affections, stocking the fire with the remaining wood and then rejoining them as we settled down for the night as Umbreon and Lady had.
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